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Author Topic: Google talk
Lark84
My skeleton is made of creamy nougat.
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posted 08-24-2005 05:06 AM      Profile for Lark84     Send New Private Message      Edit/Delete Post  Reply With Quote 
this is the hot shit, get it here:

http://www.google.com/talk/

disclaimer: I haven't actually even used the thing yet, i'm just doing my part to build up the hype.

[edit]

OK, now I've used it for a while. Not the official client (as it's only available for Windows users) but since the protocol is Jabber, it worked just fine with Adium. GAIM etc. should work equally well.

It seems to sync with your Gmail adress book somehow - people in your adress book show up in your contact list, and if you add someone to your list, he/she shows up in your Gmail adress book.

Beware of deleting contacts in Google talk - they disappear from your adress book too.

I predict this will be HUGE. It's frickin' awesome, if you ask me. Finally, I can switch from MSN (which for some reason is the prevalent IM protocol in Sweden) to an open, free protocol, *without* having to lecture my friends on why they should do the same. They'll just switch automatically, since hey, it's Google and it's integrated with Gmail. Fucking genius, on Google's behalf.

In conclusion, try it.

[ 08-24-2005, 07:35 AM: Message edited by: Lark84 ]

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Cesar
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posted 08-24-2005 04:58 PM      Profile for Cesar   Email Cesar   Send New Private Message      Edit/Delete Post  Reply With Quote 
On the one hand, google does have a great search engine. On the other, their quickly becoming the microsoft of the internet world.

I wouldn't try it. That would just be encouraging them.

From: Toronto, Canada | Registered: Jun 2000  |  IP: Logged
Lark84
My skeleton is made of creamy nougat.
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posted 08-24-2005 06:20 PM      Profile for Lark84     Send New Private Message      Edit/Delete Post  Reply With Quote 
I do see your concern. Frankly, I am a bit worried about the amount of personal data they have access to - web searches, e-mail, and now, IM (even though they don't store them on their servers, according to Google themselves).

However, right now, there is one huge difference between Google and Microsoft: Google's does not crash unexpectedly, and Google does not force proprietary formats onto people through their virtual monopoly when there's a perfectly good solution already (*cough*WMV*cough*).

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Mr. K
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posted 08-24-2005 10:01 PM      Profile for Mr. K   Author's Homepage   Email Mr. K   Send New Private Message      Edit/Delete Post  Reply With Quote 
I don't think Google is going to be "the good guys" for much longer. They might not even be now.

A friend of mine bought a Scion and described it in an e-mail as a "microwave on wheels" or something. It was cc:'ed to another friend who uses gmail, and he got ads about cheap prices on microwave ovens.

It's interesting to fuck with the system and append mindless strings of nonsense to gmail users, just to see what sort of ads they'll get.

I understand that they're providing a service for free and you have to expect something like that, but I also don't like the greatest search engine company in the world having access to all my conversations with my friends.

Also also I guess cell phone companies are finally admitting they can track you whereever you go with your phone now. They used to kick up a lot of bullshit about how it was too difficult to track you down, but now they're doing it routinely...

Just stuff to think about...

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MewtwoSama
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posted 08-25-2005 01:13 AM      Profile for MewtwoSama   Author's Homepage   Email MewtwoSama   Send New Private Message      Edit/Delete Post  Reply With Quote 
Also also I guess cell phone companies are finally admitting they can track you whereever you go with your phone now. They used to kick up a lot of bullshit about how it was too difficult to track you down, but now they're doing it routinely...

That's insanely useful if you get stranded or lost

From: Abyss of Evil | Registered: Feb 2000  |  IP: Logged
Kingler
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posted 08-26-2005 04:14 PM      Profile for Kingler   Email Kingler   Send New Private Message      Edit/Delete Post  Reply With Quote 
there was a segment of nightline last night that was all about how nebraska and 5 other states don't have capabilities to track cellphone based 911 calls. they showed this couple who had got lost outside of town in a snowstorm. only problem was they were both totally spun out on ice and had walked away from their car, jackets and were wandering in the middle of nowhere and it was 20 degrees outside and dropping. they both died cuz they couldn't be located.

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arise chicken, arise

From: Arlington, TX | Registered: Oct 2001  |  IP: Logged
starCaliber
is evil and also MewtwoSama
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posted 08-30-2005 11:51 PM      Profile for starCaliber   Email starCaliber   Send New Private Message      Edit/Delete Post  Reply With Quote 
quote:
Originally posted by Mr. K:
I don't think Google is going to be "the good guys" for much longer. They might not even be now.

A friend of mine bought a Scion and described it in an e-mail as a "microwave on wheels" or something. It was cc:'ed to another friend who uses gmail, and he got ads about cheap prices on microwave ovens.

who cares

don't be so quick to jump on the anti-slashdot-nerds bandwagon. yes, the 'Google is perfect' zealots are annoying little fuckbags that need to be curb-checked and then stabbed, but people who are all up in tinfoil hats about the way Gmail works are equally irritating. yes, google is a business, and yes, they're going to make their money, but the fact is that Gmail's a pretty sweet service for free. as stated in their privacy policy, 'relevant' ads are displayed by the system just running your messages through a googlesearch automatically and returning ads that words in your message match. it's not perfect, but it's probably good enough to convince advertisers that their crappy website will get shown to the correct target audience without any effort on their parts, and in turn, to fork over fat cash so i can have a lot of free storage for porn and stuff.

the system is unobtrusive, doesn't have some cuntrag reading your mail, puts money in google's pockets, puts one megafuckload of storage in your Gmail account, and is pretty much ingenius from a business standpoint.

as far as google not being good guys, they're no better or worse than any other business. that 'Google Earth' shit seems pretty overpriced, the google internet speeder upper thing was bork as fuck, Google Talk is goddam pointless and a half, and Google Desktop Search was kinda chill but also pretty useless so i deleted it. but Gmail is a damn fine service. your perception of google should boil down to your discretion as a consumer.

From: San Francisco, CA | Registered: Apr 2000  |  IP: Logged
Fish
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posted 08-30-2005 11:54 PM      Profile for Fish     Send New Private Message      Edit/Delete Post  Reply With Quote 
k who really posted the above message

way too long and coherent for kalibar's internet tastes

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Bullshit.

From: Phoenix, AZ | Registered: Apr 2000  |  IP: Logged
starCaliber
is evil and also MewtwoSama
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posted 08-31-2005 12:05 AM      Profile for starCaliber   Email starCaliber   Send New Private Message      Edit/Delete Post  Reply With Quote 
sup dog
From: San Francisco, CA | Registered: Apr 2000  |  IP: Logged
Mr. K
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posted 08-31-2005 01:02 AM      Profile for Mr. K   Author's Homepage   Email Mr. K   Send New Private Message      Edit/Delete Post  Reply With Quote 
Kingler: there was a segment of nightline last night that was all about how nebraska and 5 other states don't have capabilities to track cellphone based 911 calls.

That's only because there are legal impediments to getting that info. The technology exists to do it, though.

It's another of those privacy things we always have in this country. If we want to stop speeders, we can just set up some cameras and rig all the auto-pass detectors to do a little math and send you tickets in the mail. I think they do that in England, right? We used to hate that shit before 9/11.

Anyway, I think Cal is being a little unrealistic regarding the Google thing. (Also I am not jumping on any bandwagons, since I don't read slashdot (those guys are like teh biggest ignorant arrogant assholes evar) or any of that nerd garbage and I won't let cflakkin send me any more of his stupid paranoid links...) I agree that right now gmail is cool and useful and friendly, but once Google owns the thoughts of a generation, what happens when they get bought out by EvilCorp in 2010?

I know what you're saying, though...I'm a TiVo subscriber and right this second they don't seem to be doing anything particularly evil, although they are edging closer to it every day.

My personal feeling is that as long as the current TiVo crew stays in control, the system will be OK, but if they get purchased by Microsoft or Disney or some other evil empire, or even if there's just a stockholder revolt because they aren't making as much cash as is humanly possible...

You can't fight capitalism...no one stays cool forever. Every superior company collapses into mediocrity and evil eventually.

From: Cinnabar Island | Registered: Feb 2000  |  IP: Logged
Lark84
My skeleton is made of creamy nougat.
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posted 08-31-2005 03:10 AM      Profile for Lark84     Send New Private Message      Edit/Delete Post  Reply With Quote 
quote:
Originally posted by starCaliber:
(...) Google Talk is goddam pointless and a half (...)

Not really - it's an IM service which works, just like the rest of them. If you think IM is pointless, then I can see your point.

What's exciting about Google Talk is, like I mentioned before, that it uses Jabber. Google are big enough to "force" Jabber upon many people, much like Microsoft made the über-crappy WMA and WMV the "industry standard" for online media content...

I'm a Slashdot reader (cue flames [Wink] ) and I read an interesting article there about Jabber and the server-to-server capabilities of it.

Basically, if everyone used Jabber, you wouldn't need shit like Trillian/Gaim to IM with all your friends - it wouldn't matter which IM service they used, since the messages would be delievered similarly to e-mail via the DNS - but only one single account, and one username.

Unfortunately, Google Talk does not yet have s2s enabled. Let's hope they enable that.

And yes, Google will probably turn evil. I'm beginning to think that "large company ==> evil"... Anyone have anything to back that up, or refute it?

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Cesar
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posted 08-31-2005 07:36 AM      Profile for Cesar   Email Cesar   Send New Private Message      Edit/Delete Post  Reply With Quote 
A little out of topic, but (and correct me if I'm wrong) as long as the cell phone hits two recieving towers, you can get an idea of where a person is (two for a radius, three being key). You don't need 'technogoly' to do it, it just exists.

If you had a calculator that only added, you don't need the technology to multiply. 5x9 is the same thing as adding 5 to itself 9 times.

Back to the topic at hand. I learned about a week ago that not all corporations are evil, only the vast majority are.
Googletalk also offers links to other IM applications, which is pretty cool. That's about all I can say without trying it.

From: Toronto, Canada | Registered: Jun 2000  |  IP: Logged
Lark84
My skeleton is made of creamy nougat.
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posted 08-31-2005 12:56 PM      Profile for Lark84     Send New Private Message      Edit/Delete Post  Reply With Quote 
You're certainly right about the cell phones. The tracking gets even better when you're in a city.

I can't wait until they start tracking people's moves in cities based on that.

There was a service offered by a major telco here in Sweden, FriendFinder, which utilised that fact to SMS you when they detected one of your friends (as assigned by you) near you.

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Mr. K
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posted 08-31-2005 03:55 PM      Profile for Mr. K   Author's Homepage   Email Mr. K   Send New Private Message      Edit/Delete Post  Reply With Quote 
Cesar: A little out of topic, but (and correct me if I'm wrong) as long as the cell phone hits two recieving towers, you can get an idea of where a person is (two for a radius, three being key). You don't need 'technogoly' to do it, it just exists.

Well, cell towers are technology...

Obviously, they need some idea of your location to get the signal to and from your phone, so when they were claiming that they couldn't narrow down your location, they were just full of shit.

I learned about a week ago that not all corporations are evil, only the vast majority are.

Some examples of large, non-evil companies that have been around for a while would be a good thing to add to this discussion...

Even when Wal-Mart isn't doing overtly evil things, the mere existence of one of their locations kills small businesses nearby. Of course, they go the extra mile and do all sorts of other evil stuff, but the net result of properly applied capitalism is that the little guy gets raped.

From: Cinnabar Island | Registered: Feb 2000  |  IP: Logged
Anthrax
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posted 08-31-2005 05:31 PM      Profile for Anthrax   Author's Homepage   Email Anthrax   Send New Private Message      Edit/Delete Post  Reply With Quote 
google has been bad news bears ever since that incident with that thing they had that would cache passwords and give them to whoever

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She told The Associated Press she first realized her son was mentally ill in 1996 when he killed her oldest child, a 25-year-old woman who suffered from cerebral palsy, by beating her with a dumbbell.

From: Somebody put shit in my pants! | Registered: Apr 2000  |  IP: Logged
starCaliber
is evil and also MewtwoSama
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posted 09-01-2005 04:31 PM      Profile for starCaliber   Email starCaliber   Send New Private Message      Edit/Delete Post  Reply With Quote 
K: but once Google owns the thoughts of a generation, what happens when they get bought out by EvilCorp in 2010?

while the idea of google getting bought out at some point seems about as realistic as me being able to fill up my tank for less than thirty fucking dollars again, i suppose i can recognize your concern. it kind of seems to me like the current privacy policy they offer to their members would need to carry over to their current subscribers under any new management (assuming hell froze over and they were somehow ousted) in order to avoid about a billion lawsuits from angry and invaded nerds with archived copies of said policy, but then again, a google buyout would probably turn things into a whole different ballgame in a lot of unpredictable ways.

but that's just bullshit hypothesizing, and i don't like daydreaming myself into paranoia. basically, if your definition of "google is evil" means "hey wow, google sure does like to collect a fuckload of information and then use it to their advantage in the corporate world," then you are correct; they are some evil fucks. in fact, you pretty much just summed up their business model:



now obviously, gmail alone in its current capacity wasn't doing enough to quench the google-thirst for dollarsigns, or they wouldn't be off working on sketchy, weird-ass "let's get ourselves a monopoly on the internet" projects like google chatterthinger, google on your fucking desktop, google-flavored hot pockets in your local grocery store, or whatever the shit else they're frankensteining together. these things all strike me as classic examples of your "You can't fight capitalism...no one stays cool forever." statement, and to that end, I fully agree with you that it's within google's capacity and possibly even forseeable future to degenerate into a festering shitpile in pretty much every non-Gmail/google.com avenue possible.

the unfortunate thing about it is that they've already got blubbering zombies such as Lark84 spewing vomit like "boy it sure is exciting that google's trying to force themselves on me where i don't fucking need them!" and then backing it up with "well, as long as the entire goddam internet switches to the same protocol that google endorses it will be awesome." the features i look for in an IM client are a complete lack of ads, automatic IM logging, tabbed windows or some other way of consolidating IM-client diarrhea into one window on my desktop, and the ability to talk to all of my real-life friends who have been stuck on AOL for decades and don't give two fucks of a shit what the latest push to move the internet to one service is. an old version of DeadAIM with AOL messenger seems to have done a pretty good job satisfying this need, so as far as I'm concerned, AOL wins the IM war. Gmail is a quality product because switching to it doesn't stipulate you can't talk with your friends anymore and it introduces a bunch of shit that none of the other already well-accepted and freely available alternatives offer; shit-loads of storage, POP access so I can fuck with it on Thunderbird, and a clean/subdued web interface if you need it.

your bullshit alarm should already be going off with this googletalker as soon as they shove trash down your throat like "oh hey remember that hot shit 'Gmail' we tossed your way?? yeah now that you have that you should use this crap too because it has the same name as something that was worthwhile, look you can even login with the same credentials". hey guys, Gmail is sweet and I'll keep taking advantage of that, but this chat-toy of yours can blow me.

edit:
omally: google has been bad news bears ever since that incident with that thing they had that would cache passwords and give them to whoever

that thing was pretty fucktarded to begin with since its entire purpose was centered around sending the entire internet to google.com, but their shit didn't do anything wrong to grab passwords, it just inadvertently exploited a lot of holes in forum software packages. the thing that made that whole shitfest a little gay was that they didn't get in touch with the programmers of the software that it would affect (like vBulletin, phpBB, UBB, etc.) before dumping it out for the masses to play with, so that they could all have a fair opportunity to get patches out and keep their information safe. lowtax was only being a whiny fuckhead about all that because the thing equated to him having to do a lot of work to keep SA safe, since google failed to communicate.

[ 09-01-2005, 04:42 PM: Message edited by: starCaliber ]

From: San Francisco, CA | Registered: Apr 2000  |  IP: Logged
Mr. K
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posted 09-01-2005 06:55 PM      Profile for Mr. K   Author's Homepage   Email Mr. K   Send New Private Message      Edit/Delete Post  Reply With Quote 
kalibut: while the idea of google getting bought out at some point seems about as realistic as me being able to fill up my tank for less than thirty fucking dollars again, i suppose i can recognize your concern.

You have to think long term. The nerds in charge can control things for now, but they won't live forever. Also they might easily be tempted by eleventy billion dollars and retire tomorrow.

Also also they have stockholders now, so they can't go all Lone Wolf any more. A bunch of corporate fucks can get together and oust them.

it kind of seems to me like the current privacy policy they offer to their members would need to carry over to their current subscribers under any new management...

Is that a joke?

basically, if your definition of "google is evil" means "hey wow, google sure does like to collect a fuckload of information and then use it to their advantage in the corporate world," then you are correct

No, I just think that it's inevitable that with that much accumulated data and a loss of control by the original nerds, it's going to be Evil City.

[ 09-01-2005, 06:56 PM: Message edited by: Mr. K ]

From: Cinnabar Island | Registered: Feb 2000  |  IP: Logged
White Cat
Nobody knows why I'm an admin.
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posted 09-02-2005 12:58 AM      Profile for White Cat   Author's Homepage   Email White Cat      Edit/Delete Post  Reply With Quote 
Don't the original Google nerds own the majority of Google voting stock? I recall reading an article about how they give them ten votes for each of their special "Class B" stock, while everyone else gets Class A stock with only one vote each.

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"Anybody gone into Whole Foods lately and see what they charge for arugula?"
-- Barack Obama, campaigning in Iowa

From: Calgary | Registered: Feb 2000  |  IP: Logged
Mr. K
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posted 09-02-2005 02:01 AM      Profile for Mr. K   Author's Homepage   Email Mr. K   Send New Private Message      Edit/Delete Post  Reply With Quote 
White Cat: Don't the original Google nerds own the majority of Google voting stock?

Yeah, I read something like that too. I don't think it changes much in the big picture. Eventually change will come from inside as well as out.

Also I know they just off-loaded some stock to cash in...it was billions of dollars, but it might have been just a small percentage. And I dunno if they have some scam where if you buy their B stock it converts into A.

Shape it anyway you like, though, these guys will get old and fat. It is the American Way.

ALSO: Not worrying about Google's data accumulation is like not worrying about spyware. Most spyware isn't really going to harm you directly and some of it does helpful things (like the WeatherBug and stuff), but it's not something you want to seek out in general.

[ 09-02-2005, 02:14 AM: Message edited by: Mr. K ]

From: Cinnabar Island | Registered: Feb 2000  |  IP: Logged
Lark84
My skeleton is made of creamy nougat.
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posted 09-02-2005 12:36 PM      Profile for Lark84     Send New Private Message      Edit/Delete Post  Reply With Quote 
quote:
Originally posted by starCaliber:
"boy it sure is exciting that google's trying to force themselves on me where i don't fucking need them!" and then backing it up with "well, as long as the entire goddam internet switches to the same protocol that google endorses it will be awesome."

But it's true... And Jabber is an open standard, and they're not forcing you, you can keep using AIM, and there are a ton of third-party ad free Jabber clients which incidentally support other protocols (like AIM).

Switching the entire goddamn Internet to the same protocol is what the Internet is about - one protocol for one thing. That's why it works so well.

But I will shut up about that now.

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Wintermute
My custom title sucks.
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posted 09-02-2005 11:08 PM      Profile for Wintermute   Author's Homepage   Email Wintermute   Send New Private Message      Edit/Delete Post  Reply With Quote 
I do worry about (more like cast sidelong glances at) this issue, but it is funny to characterize my history of interaction on the internet as "accumulated data."

What will the evil empire do with all that Tentacruel using Barrier information, I wonder.

From: Winnipeg, Manitoba | Registered: Feb 2000  |  IP: Logged
White Cat
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posted 09-04-2005 03:52 AM      Profile for White Cat   Author's Homepage   Email White Cat      Edit/Delete Post  Reply With Quote 
The evil empire's computers will crash when they try to figure out whether Mewtwo is cheap.
From: Calgary | Registered: Feb 2000  |  IP: Logged
MewtwoSama
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posted 10-09-2009 09:55 PM      Profile for MewtwoSama   Author's Homepage   Email MewtwoSama   Send New Private Message      Edit/Delete Post  Reply With Quote 
Someone give me a google wave invite.

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Hade ni ikuze!

From: Abyss of Evil | Registered: Feb 2000  |  IP: Logged
starCaliber
is evil and also MewtwoSama
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posted 10-10-2009 01:32 AM      Profile for starCaliber   Email starCaliber   Send New Private Message      Edit/Delete Post  Reply With Quote 
i'd give you a heterosexuality invite but tragically i don't think you'd accept
From: San Francisco, CA | Registered: Apr 2000  |  IP: Logged
Mr. K
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posted 10-25-2009 11:44 PM      Profile for Mr. K   Author's Homepage   Email Mr. K   Send New Private Message      Edit/Delete Post  Reply With Quote 
Whole universities are now dumping their on-site mail resources and switching to gmail. I wonder how far Google Apps has wormed its way into the world.

We're in total Enron territory at this point, where all these smug bastards are saying "No, it's you who don't understand this radically new paradigm!".

"This is the wave of the future and it's good for all of us, so stop complaining because you're a real fuckin' buzzkill and I just snorted all this expensive coke out of this whore's cleavage and I do not want to be fucking brought down by your bullshit."

From: Cinnabar Island | Registered: Feb 2000  |  IP: Logged
starCaliber
is evil and also MewtwoSama
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posted 10-29-2009 05:35 AM      Profile for starCaliber   Email starCaliber   Send New Private Message      Edit/Delete Post  Reply With Quote 
My school dumped their unfathomably shitty webmail system and replaced it with Google Apps a few years back. I was a real fan of the change, because if there's one thing Google does well (aside from farming literally all the data on planet earth), it's writing software. Even if you don't care for Gmail as a service, it's hard to argue that any better web-based e-mail GUI has been built. It even shames Outlook and Thunderbird in a lot of ways.

Maybe I'm not understanding how the Google Apps arrangement works, though. I was under the impression that Google offered customers the option of buying/licensing the package and hosting the service themselves for the tinfoil-hat crew, or they offered a hosted option for folks who just didn't care and/or wanted ads served. I've done absolutely zero research on this so I could be off base.

My attitude is basically this: I'm not as sensationalist-paranoid as you about Google going all Terminator on us or whatever, but I absolutely recognize the merits of not putting all your eggs in any one company's basket. I actively seek alternatives to the Google services that I've found myself dependent on, but have repeatedly encountered the giant limitation that everything else is usually horrible by comparison.

I'm personally pretty glued to Gmail (though if it came down to it I'd host my own Exchange or pay a pittance for Exchange hosting), Google Reader (unapologetically amazing), Google Maps, and now Google Talk too. In spite of the venom I railed against GTalk in this very thread, the service has turned out to offer some pretty big tangible advantages over its competitors: all chatlogs are saved to the server so I can get to them from anywhere instead of having to wade through nine different PCs and my cellphone's locally-saved AIM logs to find that hilarious YouTube video someone sent a week ago.

The biggest "problem" if you can call it that is that they just keep putting out the best products. There's a lot of talk about Bing being a viable place to transition your searching over to nowadays. That's great guys, it only took what, 8 years?

Do you guys remember using MapQuest? It fucking sucked. I checked it out recently and they've actually done an admirable job lifting some of Google Maps' functionality, though the whole product still comes off as a little bit trashy and desperate (just the way i liek em).

Let Google do the innovating, and eventually the other guys will catch (almost) up and we'll have a slew of adequate options if/when big G goes gay on us.

Still, I'd be lying if I said I didn't find this whole navigator thing really unsettling, and this is coming from someone who desparately wants to see Android succeed on every possible level.

From: San Francisco, CA | Registered: Apr 2000  |  IP: Logged
Mr. K
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posted 10-29-2009 10:41 AM      Profile for Mr. K   Author's Homepage   Email Mr. K   Send New Private Message      Edit/Delete Post  Reply With Quote 
kalibut: I was under the impression that Google offered customers the option of buying/licensing the package and hosting the service themselves for the tinfoil-hat crew, or they offered a hosted option for folks who just didn't care and/or wanted ads served.

I haven't heard about them doing that, although it's possible. Microsoft has a plan for local hosting, but that makes sense since they're used to selling software.

The reason I haven't heard about it is that Google is offering most of its services advertisement-free to Universities. If you ask them why, they'll tell you that once the accounts move from student to alumni, they'll begin charging (so it's like getting the kids hooked on crack), but that isn't true, because they aren't actively trying to push alumni into ad-peddling accounts. Google reps themselves will tell you not to bother to change the student status.

So, clearly, none of this is about direct advertising, which is allegedly how Google makes all their money. They just really, really, really want your data.

Anyway, no one ever asks about the local option, because the people analyzing a potential move to Google are bean counters looking to save money. Local IT departments are pissing their pants, because they'll all lose their jobs if everything is outsourced. They hope the suits never hear about Google, but the students used to Gmail make them notice when they see the local email and ask "wtf is this shit??".

I don't deny that Google makes the best products. They build awesome data funnels for their black box.

I just can't imagine any plausible benign explanation for what they're up to. I don't think they even offer one. They are simply banking on future generations just not giving a shit about their privacy, which seems a pretty safe bet at this point.

Let Google do the innovating, and eventually the other guys will catch (almost) up and we'll have a slew of adequate options if/when big G goes gay on us.

I don't agree with this part. Google is destroying (or buying) anyone who tries to meddle with their world domination plans, and even Microsoft, the previous unimaginably unstoppable Borg, is a laughable opponent.

I suppose it's possible, maybe even likely, that Google will be overthrown by the Next Great Evil Empire, but they seem to have learned the lesson of Microsoft. They adapt quickly, like mutants in horror movies.

Whatever kicks their ass is going to be scary indeed.

[ 10-29-2009, 04:40 PM: Message edited by: Mr. K ]

From: Cinnabar Island | Registered: Feb 2000  |  IP: Logged
Mr. K
Racist
Member # 2

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posted 10-30-2009 11:31 AM      Profile for Mr. K   Author's Homepage   Email Mr. K   Send New Private Message      Edit/Delete Post  Reply With Quote 
I'm currently mortgaging my house so I can buy a laser to scrawl I TOLD YOU SO in a thirteen mile tall font on the moon.

This is so not going to end well.

From: Cinnabar Island | Registered: Feb 2000  |  IP: Logged
starCaliber
is evil and also MewtwoSama
Member # 268

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posted 10-31-2009 05:09 AM      Profile for starCaliber   Email starCaliber   Send New Private Message      Edit/Delete Post  Reply With Quote 
It sounds to me like your problem is more with the "cloud" than it is with Google. Cloud computing (aside from being the faggiest set of homo buzzwords this side of Gay City) is all the rage right now, and -- believe it or not -- it's for two reasons other than evil companies' wannabe-Borging:

1) Bandwidth and disk space have gotten hilariously inexpensive to provide
2) Consumers demand it because it's competively-priced (or free with ads) and massively convenient

The article you linked even says L.A. spent 7 million on the shit and that Google's positioning for-pay Gmail as an affordable alternative to fucktardedly-expensive MS Office licensing. That's a big pie; it makes sense that they're looking for a piece of it. The perceived dubiousness is with the Google-hosted aspect since they're in the business of collecting data -- but even then, customers are customers by choice and if Google goes evil there's going to be other cloud service providers who are only so happy to pick up the pieces -- the G boys just have a sweet competitive advantage because they're smarter, build more-awesome "data funnels," and got a multi-year jump on this market. Hell, even the old Borg is playing catchup, and I'd be shocked if they weren't able to achieve some measure of success in this confounding new arena.

I completely agree with you insofar as getting a weird feeling in my stomach when I turn my data over to a third party, but the unmatched convenience of having all my shit readily available simply speaks so much louder. This very forum is a form of cloud computing, and I have no choice but to hand over an e-mail address, a password, and all my intimate thoughts about cloud computing and Face being a tool to you and the University of Miami if I wish to utilize this fine cloud service you've tirelessy provided us with (at a great price!) since I was a li'l babby. And my goodness, the Azure Heights Pokemon Laboratory itself was founded on the Borg-like principles of innocent users uploading their private personal expert knowledge of pokeymans for nothing more than the good of the Laboratory's already-colossal popularity. I mean yeah, that Toad guy built what was head-and-shoulders the best tool for the job with his cloud-based pokeyman domination station and its tasteful design and endless corrections and usable forums, but what did he want all that data for? It couldn't have been pride of work, an enjoyment of the tool, or even a secret desire to accumulate popularity -- it had to be sinister! Surely that injustice would not be tolerated by users!

I really do see this cloud stuff as simple economics. It's cheap to provide, customers like it, and Google would rather snare low-margin Gmail customers than lose them to Outlook and Exchange. IT departments are biting it because it's getting cheaper to farm out mail hosting, not because Google is evil -- they're just peddling the best product right now.

As far as my own cloud service usage in addition to Gmail/Reader/Maps, I'm totally hooked on Dropbox, Mint, and LastPass (though I could have done without LastPass's cloud component and self-hosted, but whatever), and all of them required a bit of an uncomfortable hand-off of control. But god damn have they ever changed the way I use computers, and I have zero desire to go back. And since they're competing for my mindshare, usage, and cash I'm just not very worried about a catastrophic blowup. It's a risk, sure, but it's a highly calculated one -- and I feel lucky, baby.

The point I'm reaching for is that neither Google nor any other cloud service provider can afford to be evil, because the competition is too tough right now and it's fixing to get worse. Avoiding the tradeoff of handing your shit over for convenience is a completely valid argument, but it just seems petty to hate on the companies who are filling the market's demands. Hate the game, not the players.

your moon laser sounds lovely but tragically i cannot endorse its message at this juncture

[ 10-31-2009, 05:24 AM: Message edited by: starCaliber ]

From: San Francisco, CA | Registered: Apr 2000  |  IP: Logged
starCaliber
is evil and also MewtwoSama
Member # 268

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posted 10-31-2009 05:32 AM      Profile for starCaliber   Email starCaliber   Send New Private Message      Edit/Delete Post  Reply With Quote 
Oops, meant to touch on this.

quote:
Originally posted by Mr. K:
...Google is offering most of its services advertisement-free to Universities. If you ask them why, they'll tell you that once the accounts move from student to alumni, they'll begin charging (so it's like getting the kids hooked on crack), but that isn't true, because they aren't actively trying to push alumni into ad-peddling accounts. Google reps themselves will tell you not to bother to change the student status.

So, clearly, none of this is about direct advertising, which is allegedly how Google makes all their money. They just really, really, really want your data.

Google makes money off of Google Apps. Handing it out free to universities is a shrewd mindshare move to get students hooked on Google's best-in-class cloud services so that they'll raise hell with their future employers to spring for G-Apps when they enter the workforce and discover pre-existing Faggus 1-2-3 or Autism Larry's In-House Mailserver-like Product systems implemented. The fact that they can reap good press for "supporting higher education" is collateral fuckin' damage.

It's the same story as Adobe, who intentionally doesn't go after people who pirate Photoshop. They bank on the notion that today's warez kiddies will blossom into tomorrow's Photoshop skillionaires and demand that their future employers spring for $600-a-pop enterprise licenses of the software and maintain their status as the industry standard.

From: San Francisco, CA | Registered: Apr 2000  |  IP: Logged
Mr. K
Racist
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posted 10-31-2009 02:47 PM      Profile for Mr. K   Author's Homepage   Email Mr. K   Send New Private Message      Edit/Delete Post  Reply With Quote 
I don't object to the cloud. I find the whole thing kind of interesting...moving from dumb terminals to mini-computers on every desk and back to dumb terminals. It's obviously crazy useful and efficient.

Especially when you consider just how much time is wasted on "IT personnel" whose whole job it is to wander around from machine to machine, pressing the UPDATE button and waiting for the little blue bar to crawl from the left to the right. Obviously those people are a drain on society and exist within corporations solely to sneer at the computer illiterate because they don't understand a thousand Microsoft-specific acronyms that have no meaning whatsoever to anyone with an actual degree in computer science.

(Also I've now spent two whole Sundays trying to get my Dad's new Vista computer to do the five simple tasks he needs a computer for. I'm two days closer to death and the thing still doesn't fucking work. Dad never listens to me.)

My complaint about the LA thing is the privatization of public data, and in this case I mean "public" in the governmental sense. Not that our government isn't already corrupt on every level and completely in the pockets of various corporations, but the process of outsourcing the nation's infrastructure to private corporations is the kind of thing they used to make hyperbolic movies about in the seventies and everyone thought it was thought-provoking and a good laugh and oh shit it actually happened while we were watching comforting reality shows about horrible people worse than us that we can laugh at while we quietly become horrible people ourselves.

And not to beat a dead horse, but the Azure Heights World Conglomerate only knows what you tell it about yourself. Basically they know which off-hours you spend thinking about Pokemon and/or calling people shitbricks, but they aren't tracking you by GPS, cross-referencing that with pictures of yourself, your voicemail, all your purchases, everything you read, etc. and the interface between all of the above and your friends and your friends' friends, etc.

You're making a pretty clear transaction with the AHWC. You give them a little bit of data, most of which is easy to forge, in exchange for play time.

I suppose you're making the same deal with Google, but I don't think these people are going into it with their eyes wide open. It's pretty clear that no one in government has any fucking idea what the Internet is. (Although somehow the Republicans always figure out how to be evil, even when they have no idea wtf they are talking about.)

If you want a non-evil cloud, just get one that enforces encryption. Of course, Google won't do that, because the whole point is that they want to know everything about you and what you're up to.

It is interesting that they are actually making some money on Google Apps, but is it a significant portion of their income? Sounds like something they'd do to shut up wily foxes within their customers' companies who might want to know what's up with the free lunch.

Also Idiocracy was not a great movie (the first 5 minutes are the best), but this seems like an appropriate time to say "brought to you by Carl's Jr."

[ 11-01-2009, 12:38 PM: Message edited by: Mr. K ]

From: Cinnabar Island | Registered: Feb 2000  |  IP: Logged
Face
I invented cancer.
Member # 1916

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posted 11-09-2009 10:30 PM      Profile for Face   Author's Homepage   Email Face   Send New Private Message      Edit/Delete Post  Reply With Quote 
Google talk is the shit, I mean you can use the bitch for pretty much anything and you can go to it to search for God knows what, all while doong some crazy things on it. Google talk is nothing to sneeze at because it can become an annoyance, but eh, go figure that some people would actually want to use it to further their knowledge in a given subject or field or practically anything they can muster their minds to think of.

Me? I will consider using this over regular Google, though Google is not without its own unique style and brand of search engine.

[ 11-11-2009, 04:30 PM: Message edited by: Face ]

- - - - -
Weezing!

From: Hackensack, nj | Registered: Jun 2001  |  IP: Logged


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